Johann van Graan to Robert Fowler, 23 October 1883
Archive location: Bodleian Libraries, MSS. Brit. Emp. s. 18 / C135 – 184
Author(s): Johann van Graan
Recipient(s): Frederick Chesson
Sent from: Cape Colony
Date: 23 October 1883
[Honby A.?] Fowler
I was pleased to see in a telegram received here this morning that you objected to the Transvaal Rebel Deputation being invited to the Lord Mayor’s banquet. I suffered much during the Transvaal Rebellion and although I remained loyal to the English I did not receive a farthing compensation. I was driven out of the country by the rebels for my loyalty and have been obliged to work as a farmer in the Caledon district. Seeing that you are opposed to the Rebel Dutchmen and although I am one myself but thank god I am a loyal man I would like you to advise English capitalists that as the Transvaal deputation have gone over to England principally to try and raise a loan to warn persons not to advance any loan as they will never see their money back again. I have friends in the Transvaal who wrote to me last week that the Transvaal was in a deplorable state and this I know that slavery is still practised throughout the Transvaal. At a dinner given at the Paarl to the Transvaal Deputation the most seditious speeches were made by the General Smidt the Dutchman who led the charge up ‘Majuba’ Hill and who bosted that he shot ‘Colley’ through the head and hoped some day he said to thrash the English out of South Africa similar speeches were made by ‘Kruger’ and one especially by J.H. Hofmeyr member of Parliament for Cape Town who said that they had enough of English rule and that the Dutch should rise up and rebel and clear out all Englishmen no doubt you have seen the speeches made by these disloyal Dutchmen in the Cape Papers although a greater part of the speeches were suppressed for fear of raising English indignation and for all the misery brought on to South Africa we have to thank one man that low debasing creature ‘Gladstone’ may God’s curse rest on him I am a poor man today and he is the cause of it I lost everything in the Transvaal rebellion so much for loyalty I hope I may live to see the day when the Boers in the Transvaal will suffer they have small pox there now may have of them die. Pardon me Sir for addressing you being a stranger.
You may make use of this letter but please keep my name a secret.
Your obt servant
Johann Van Graan